An introduction to OLED displays. What is an OLED? How do OLEDs work? OLED vs LCD...

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

An introduction to OLED displays

Article last updated on: Apr 14, 2018  from OLED-Info


What is an OLED?

OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diodes) is a flat light emitting technology, made by placing a series of organic thin films between two conductors. When electrical current is applied, a bright light is emitted. OLEDs are emissive display that do not require a backlight and so are thinner and more efficient than LCD displays (which do require a white backlight).

Introduction to OLED display / see the video

OLED displays are not just thin and efficient - they provide the best image quality ever and they can also be made transparent, flexible, foldable and even rollable and stretchable in the future. OLEDs represent the future of display technology!



An OLED display have the following advantages over an LCD display: 

  • - Improved image quality - better contrast, higher brightness, fuller viewing angle, a wider color range and much faster refresh rates.
  • - Lower power consumption.
  • - Simpler design that enables ultra-thin, flexible, foldable and transparent displays
  • - Better durability - OLEDs are very durable and can operate in a broader temperature range


The future - flexible and transparent OLED displays

As we said, OLEDs can be used to create flexible and transparent displays. This is pretty exciting as it opens up a whole world of possibilities:

  • - Curved OLED displays, placed on non-flat surfaces
  • - Wearable OLEDs
  • - Foldable OLEDs which can be used to create new mobile devices
  • - Transparent OLEDs embedded in windows or car windshields
  • - And many more we cannot even imagine today...

Flexible OLEDs are already on the market, and it is believed that in 2018 companies will start producing foldable OLED mobile phones. The future will bring us much more exciting displays, so stay tuned


How do OLEDs work?

An OLED is made by placing a series of organic thin films between two conductors. When electrical current is applied, a bright light is emitted. 


OLED disadvantages

OLEDs aren't perfect. First of all, it costs more to produce an OLED than it does to produce an LCD - although this should hopefully change in the future, as OLEDs has a potential to be even cheaper than LCDs because of their simple design (some believe that future OLEDs will be printed using simple ink-jet processes).

OLEDs have limited lifetime (like any display, really), that was quite a problem a few years ago. But there has been constant progress, and today this is almost a non-issue. Today OLEDs last long enough to be used in mobile devices and TVs. OLEDs can also be problematic in direct sunlight because of their emissive nature. But companies are working to make it better, and newer AMOLEDs are quite good in that respect - some even consider them superior to LCDs.